Zed looks like what most people expect a weekend warrior or wanna-be soldier looks like. He is slightly shorter than average, and is somewhat scrawny, and while he dresses in military fatigues, he personal appearance is disheveled and sloppy. He shoes aren't shined, his jacket is a size too large, and he's about three days past his last shave, possible that long since his last shower. In contrast to this lack of personal attention to grooming and appearance, Zed has an absolutely unflappable deadpan form of talking and his voice is a little rough like he's spent the last 40 years smoking. Most casual observers think that Zed is either on some sort of anti-psychotic medication, or that he is possibly one of the most cocky arrogant people they have the misfortune of meeting. He shows no respect to anyone, unless they have in his eyes earned it. He has a perpetually tired air about him, and he has a smirk, one that is full of utter contempt for everything around him that makes most people want to hit him.
Getting to Know You/Backstory:
Born Zak Edwards Leterrier, he has gone by Zed for as long as he can remember. Zed was a below average student in school, easily distracted, and faded in and out of passing and failing. He was certainly smart, but there was something about him that didn't click. He graduated by the seat of his pants, and was pushed into higher education. He flitted through college, picked up a serious relationship, and entered into a job at a cubicle farm in a megacorp demi-arco. He worked there several years, slowly dieing in the competitive corporate world. His relationship fell apart, and Zed had a mental break down that ended with him incarcerated for assaulting several people and blowing up his own apartment unit.
After several years in a double max prison, Zed was released, and found that he had been blacklisted throughout his industry and was only going to be able to find a job making minimum wage, where he would have to compete with menial clones and manual labor robots.
After a while, Zed found himself in the military. He joined the Federation Army, because the pay was better, and there was a promise that he might get to take out some of his frustration on the world with guns and giant robots. Things took their usual course, and Zed failed the mecha corps test, and the power armor operation exam, and eventually bottomed out into the Logistics Division where was going to be assigned low end jobs like driving disposal vehicles, and manning a booth at an arco security check point. Another cubicle, another rat race.
Getting to Know All About You/The Second Date
Zed was weeks away from a dishonorable discharge and possibly another prison sentence when he was approached and recruited by the Federation Special Projects Division. The SPD wanted Leterrier to join one of their research programs, and it was an increase in pay, and a relocation. No more scanning deltas and scabs for concealed weapons, no more shaking down junkies trying to get drugs into the arcos to sell, no more looking at bioscans of unattractive women, no more disease alarms... Zed jumped at the opportunity.
Zed was raised to an NCO, and is now a member of a Federation UW Team. The Unconventional Warfare Teams are composed entirely of Supersoldier grade personnel, and Zed's assignment to UW-1 leaves most people scratching their heads. UW-1 is one of the best, if not the best of the UW teams deployed, with a long history of successful missions. While most people consider him a liar or blowhard, a cursory investigation will reveal that Zed is indeed a member of UW-1 and is listed as Heavy/Support.
What's in the Closet/The Secret
Zed's assignment to the SPD was as a test subject for new supersoldier treatments. As a guinea pig, he had a number of serums tested on him, as well as testing a number of new weapons for super soldiers. After a year, he was given a chance to try a new arcanotech treatment, or be honorably discharged. He took the treatment option, and was subjected to bombardment by arcane radiation while under the effects of a cocktail of chemicals and gene treatments. The end effect was a semi-stable biomorphic mutation.
Zed became a beast. He increased in size, gaining several feet in height, and added on almost a thousand pounds in weight. His muscles rippled with power, and his dense skin was almost impervious to conventional weapons. What did wound him, he was able to quickly heal back from. Laser burns healed in seconds, bullet wounds were the same. The mutation operated in a wave state. He could maintain the beast form for a while, but eventually it would fade and he would revert to his scrawny human form. After a year of further testing, and psychological evaluation, Zed was promoted out of the SPD and into the UW division. He balances down time between missions, spending as much time in his normal weaker form as possible. It's just cheaper for him to not let the beast out. When he is on a mission, he is a walking tank, and is typically given primitive armor and an equally primitive but powerful weapon to carry.
But not everything is violence and destruction. Somewhere in the maelstrom of war, between the crushing men in power armor suits, and demolishing skeletrons by the handful, something awoke inside Zed. Inside his battered, worn, dirty soul, something awoke. There was something very zen about the Beast, about the way it was separate from him, how it was powerful, majestic, and despite being assigned to a military team, part of a massive military industrial complex, it was free. It was beautifully free. In the frenzy of rage, the beast didn't worry. It didn't care. It was utterly and completely free, able to let go of everything that did not matter.
Zed has penned several books on the topic of philosophy, all through different false names. These books are quietly circulated in certain circles in the military, as his experiences as a super soldier have resonated, both in their stark violence and brutal honesty. The military brass have found and destroyed a number of these books, as they strongly dislike how much of their operation has been revealed by them, if only through allegory.
Philosopher, terrorist, social degenerate, super soldier, criminal, war hero. It's all perspective.
Author's Note: The idea I had was what would happen if Ed Norton combined his roles from Fight Club and The Hulk? The end result is above, combining the deadpan 'I am Jack's persistent hatred' as the human side, and the Hulk as the SMASH! alternative to Tyler Durden. All of this wrapped in the appearance of a military burn out, or miscreant.